CORONA DEL MAR — Coach Mark Decker is sporting a new beard at Corona del Mar High. The facial hair is a tribute to his father, Ron, who passed away recently.
Fans understood why Decker scratched his beard rather than his head a handful of times on Monday night. His girls' basketball team tipped off the season against a team it usually beats easily.
San Juan Hills gave the Sea Kings a contest in the opening round of the CdM Tip-Off Tournament.
The Sea Kings used a 7-0 run in the fourth quarter to get past a former Pacific Coast League opponent, 43-35, and advance to the quarterfinals of the 16-team tournament.
The tournament is in its third year and CdM has reached the championship game every year. Decker believes the Sea Kings have to work on some things before making a run this year.
"I don't even want to know," Decker said of his team's 44.4 free-throw-shooting percentage. "They fouled us a lot and we didn't take advantage."